In tne beginning, the internet was all text. then along came browsers capable of handling images. As popularity of the internet increased, people started selling things online. Not too long after that, banner ads starting appearing. Before long, it seemed that nearly everyone was using banner ads, and the users learned to ignore them. Along with other advances, Pop-Up ads appeared, and they became quite popular as well. However, many users absolutely hate them, and due to their abuse, many browsers can block most pop ups. Today’s question is whether banner ads or pop ups are the future or past for internet advertising.
As you can see from the introduction, they local classifieds were clearly in the past of internet advertising, and at least at one time, were very effective. However, Banner Ads became so over used they essentially became invisible, and many advertisers quit wasting their time and space on them. Pop-ups had a similar history, in that they were great for a while, until the novelty wore off and they started to be used in an obnoxious manner and many users retaliated. Fortunately, the newer browsers can block most pop ups, though given the way the internet world works, for every limitation, a new opportunity is seen for a workaround or alternate method to perform much the same function.
Today, banner ads are still alive and well, but are typically being used more responsibly than in the early days of internet marketing. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes, not just the “short and wide” standard of yesterday. They can also implement moving content, though if you have a page with a lot of content, you probably don’t want a bold moving element in your banner ad as it distracts the user from reading your content.
Pop-ups are also making a reasonable comeback, because various methods have been developed that work around the limits of the browser. One that is quite useful is a time delayed pop-up. After the user has been on your page for 20 or 30 seconds, giving them plenty of time to read much of your content, or at least become interested, the pop-up appears, usually offering an opt-in box for your newsletter. This can be effective, but there are some problems.
As our audience becomes more connected, they are increasingly using mobile devices to access the internet. As they move to more portable devices, the screen sizes decrease. If you create a banner ad that won’t fit on screen, you’ve probably begun the alienation of your mobile viewer. If you have a pop-up that is bigger than the screen, or the close tag is beyond the screen edges, you may have alienated the user to the point of losing them altogether. While this sort of thing is most problematic with internet connected phones, it can also be an issue with notebooks and netbooks, that have screens that don’t always have a high vertical pixel count. It seems the focus of the PC manufacturers is wider, not proportionately larger. For example, a typical 15″ notebook may have a screen 1366 pixels wide but only 768 tall. By the time a user has the browser open and a couple of toolbars in place, that doesn’t provide much vertical real-estate for displaying your message.